FCC Seeks Comment on Rural Digital Opportunity Fund Petitions for Designation as an Eligible Telecommunications Carrier
The Federal Communications Commission's Wireline Competition Bureau seeks comment on multiple petitions for designation as an Eligible Telecommunications Carrier (ETC) for the purpose of becoming eligible to receive universal service support. The petitioners are winning bidders, or those assigned support through the division of winning bids, in the Rural Digital Opportunity Fund (RDOF) auction (Auction 904). ETC designation is a prerequisite to receiving universal service support available through the high-cost and Lifeline programs. Recipients of high-cost support, including recipients of RDOF support awarded pursuant to Auction 904, must offer the Lifeline discount on all qualifying services in areas where an ETC receives high-cost support, deploy a network capable of delivering service that meets the Lifeline program’s minimum service standards, and commercially offer such service pursuant to their high-cost obligations. To the extent that a petition specifically includes areas outside of RDOF-eligible census blocks, the Bureau will treat the petition as a request for Lifeline-only designation in those areas (although the petitioner will be obligated to provide Lifeline services throughout its entire designation area). Interested parties may file comments on or before April 7, 2021 and replies on or before April 22, 2021. All pleadings must reference WC Docket No. 09-197.
Wireline Competition Bureau Seeks Comment on Rural Digital Opportunity Fund Petitions for Designation as an Eligible Telecommuni